NASCAR has sent out a bulletin this week in regards to a rear end issue that was first brought up in a post-race press conference at the end of the Michigan race last month.
Brad Keselowski complained that certain Hendrick’s teams had a competitive advantage over his Penske Racing team because of a grey area in the NASCAR rule book that allowed Hendrick to tinker with the rear end.
Brad also stated that his team was not willing to push those types of issues with a chance of violating the NASCAR rule book that could get his crew chief suspended or loss of points going into the Chase for the 2012 Sprint Cup.
NASCAR quickly sent a press release claiming that there was no rule infraction with what Hendrick Motorsports had discovered, but it would continue to look into the claim. After evaluation, NASCAR released a new statement and a reconfirmation of how far teams can go when setting up suspension setups.
NASCAR issued a technical bulletin Thursday, Sept. 6 that reconfirms the limits NASCAR Sprint Cup Series teams can go in setting up their rear end suspensions in their race cars. Effective Sept. 12, the truck trailing arm front mounting bushing assemblies may be built to allow a maximum of ¼ inch of total movement in one direction only. Truck trailing arm front mounting bushings must be designed to move freely throughout the ¼ inch of approved travel. Previously approved front truck trailing arm bushing assemblies which allow more than ¼ inch of movement or that do not move freely throughout the ¼ inch travel will no longer be permitted for use in competition. Approved front truck trailing arm bushing assemblies must not be altered after being approved. Wheelbase, rear axle location (parallel), offset and rear axle housing alignment will be inspected both pre-race and post-race.
“This doesn’t change any rules that we’ve already had,” said John Darby, NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Director. “It reconfirms how far teams can go with their rear suspension setups. Teams have found that with a car’s rear axle steer more is better as it helps with aero and gets the cars through the corners faster. We are just reminding the teams what the limitations are and that they cannot go past these limitations. We will likely address this further in our 2013 rule book.”
This is not the first time NASCAR has had to address issues from teams pushing the envelope when it comes to NASCAR’s rulebook. It is certainly not the first time NASCAR has had to reconfirm Chad Knaus on what is legal and what is not.
Just my opinion, but I believe Chad Knaus will continue to push the envelope on just about anything and until NASCAR hires Chad to work for them, he will continue to find behind the closet, grey area’s in NASCAR’s rule-book.
Chris Creighton is a member of the NASCAR media and writes articles for RantSports.com. You can also follow him on Twitter @FlagofCaution for all the latest news & updates in the racing world.